Why some planned giving departments are missing out on bequests.

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Greg Warner is CEO and Founder of MarketSmart, a revolutionary marketing software and services firm that helps nonprofits raise more for less. In 2012 Greg coined the phrase “Engagement Fundraising” to encapsulate his breakthrough fundraising formula for achieving extraordinary results. Using their own innovative strategies and technologies, MarketSmart helps fundraisers around the world zero in on the donors most ready to support their organizations and institutions with major and legacy gifts.

A friend of mine went to a really large public university.  He heard about our SmartGiftmaker and told me I should call someone at his Alma Mater.  So I did.  Or so I tried to do.

I went online, found the University’s website.  Entered “planned giving” in their search bar and found a list of stuff.  Some of it had to do with planned giving.  Some of it didn’t.  So I entered “donation”.  That sent me to a “Donate Now!” page.

I searched around and found a link for planned giving.  So I clicked it and got to a page with a huge photo and the words “What is your legacy?” along with some other links about ways to give.

But I really just wanted to talk to someone and I couldn’t find a phone number to call.  So I went back to the “Donate Now!” page and found a phone number for the development office.  And guess what happened when I dialed that number?

I got the Engineering School!

No kidding.  I got the Engineering School.

I figured I dialed incorrectly so I tried again and sure enough, the number was wrong.

So I went back to the search bar and found some other links and some other phone numbers.  I finally got someone in the development office and told him that I was looking for the Planned Giving office.  He was happy to transfer me.  But guess where I went?  TO THE ENGINEERING SCHOOL!

I had to give up.  And I wonder how many donors gave up too?  How many bequests must they have lost?

I didn’t have time to track down the planned giving department any longer.  But the next time I spoke to my friend I encouraged him to let his Alma Mater know that they were missing out in big way.

Folks… let’s make it easy to give, ok?

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